Wednesday, December 11 2013 5:58 AM EST2013-12-11 10:58:59 GMT
(WMC-TV) – Shelby County leaders will take steps toward building a new convention center in the city of Memphis during Wednesday's county commission meeting. Former Mayor Willie Herenton and Mayor A. C.More >>
Shelby County leaders will take steps toward building a new convention center in the city of Memphis during Wednesday's county commission meeting.More >>
Wednesday, December 11 2013 5:06 AM EST2013-12-11 10:06:45 GMT
(WMC-TV) - A proposal goes before the Shelby County Commission Wednesday involving a $20,000 pay raise for Shelby County Schools District Board members. That is a proposed raise of almost 600 percent forMore >>
A proposal goes before the Shelby County Commission Wednesday involving a $20,000 pay raise for Shelby County Schools District Board members. More >>
Tuesday, December 10 2013 11:58 PM EST2013-12-11 04:58:04 GMT
(WMC-TV) - As world leaders come together to honor Nelson Mandela, a young Memphis man looks back on the encounter he had with South Africa's former President more than a decade ago in Memphis. HistoryMore >>
As world leaders come together to honor Nelson Mandela, a young Memphis man looks back on the encounter he had with South Africa's former president more than a decade ago in Memphis.More >>
Tuesday, December 10 2013 11:31 PM EST2013-12-11 04:31:54 GMT
(WMC-TV) - A Crittenden County jailer was arrested for possession of drugs. Investigators charged David Polk in Shelby County Tuesday. The 52-year-old faces drug charges including the possession of cocaineMore >>
A Crittenden County jailer was arrested for possession of drugs.More >>
Tuesday, December 10 2013 11:21 PM EST2013-12-11 04:21:07 GMT
(WMC-TV) - The Shelby County Schools District board voted to approve the agreement made Monday between SCS and Germantown. Germantown's Board of Aldermen voted unanimously to approve an agreement betweenMore >>
The Shelby County Schools District board voted to approve a settlement agreement Tuesday with Germantown.More >>
MEMPHIS, TN (WMC-TV) -Video obtained by Action News 5 shows a Memphis police officer beating a suspect at 201 Poplar in an apparent case of police brutality.
The video, recorded February 12th, shows Duanna Johnson in the booking area at the Shelby County Criminal Justice Center after an arrest for prostitution. The tape clearly shows a Memphis police officer walk over to Johnson - a transsexual - and hit her in the face several times.
"Actually he was trying to get me to come over to where he was, and I responded by telling him that wasn't my name - that my mother didn't name me a 'faggot' or a 'he-she,' so he got upset and approached me. And that's when it started," Johnson said.
Johnson said the officer was attempting to call her over to be fingerprinted. She said she chose not respond to the derogatory name the officer called her.
"He said, 'I'm telling you, I'm giving you one more chance to get up.' So I'm looking at him, and he started putting his gloves on, and seen him take out a pair of handcuffs," Johnson said.
The officer hit Johnson several times with the handcuffs wrapped around his knuckles. In the video, you can see the flash of the metal. The tape shows another officer holding Johnson's shoulders as she tries to protect herself.
After taking several blows, Johnson stands up and swings back.
"I was afraid. I had had enough. Like I said, I thought the other officers that were witnessing this would at least try to stop him," Johnson said. "I mean, he hit me so hard. Like the third time he hit me, it split my skull and I had blood coming out. So I jumped up," Johnson said.
But then she sat back down, and the officer her in the face again. Then he maced her. On the tape, other people in the room are seen turning away and fanning their hands because of the smell.
"We wanted some acknowledgement - my client did - so she would know that the Memphis Police Department didn't condone this," said Murray Wells, Johnson's attorney. "We were optimistic that they would be as outraged about this as we are, and we haven't gotten any indication that they're interested in it at all.
"These are the people we depend on to protect us, and I think the majority of officers in Memphis are good officers, and when you see what you see on that video, it's a scary sight to see that that could happen to any one of us," added attorney Arthur Horne.
On the tape, Duanna is eventually handcuffed and left on the floor. A nurse comes in, and goes directly to the officer.
"I couldn't breathe, and they just made me lay there," Johnson said. "Nobody checked to see if I was okay. My eyes were burning. My skin was burning. I was scared to death. Even the nurse came in and she just ignored me, and I begged her to help me."
A copy of the tape was reviewed by both the FBI and the District Attorney's office, the latter of which dropped all charges against Johnson. An FBI investigation into possible civil rights violations is still underway.
Meanwhile, the Memphis Police Department confirmed to Action News 5 that the officer holding Johnson was on probation, and has been fired. The officer who threw the punches is currently on non-enforcement status pending an administrative hearing.
Since the video of the jailhouse beat down first aired on Action News 5, we have learned more about the other people who were in the in-take area at the jail during the incident, particularly the nurse who was called to help.
The Shelby County Sheriff's Department tells Action News 5 that a nurse employed by the Sheriff's Department was called to assess the situation.
The nurse asked Duanna Johnson if she was okay, and noticed Johnson had been sprayed with mace.
A spokesman for the Sheriff's Department said the nurse determined Johnson was not in an emergency situation, and then left the room to make arrangements for the Memphis Police Department to transport Johnson to The Med for treatment.
Later, the nurse returned to provide the officer medical care for a scratch on the back of his head.
Johnson was in the custody of the Memphis Police Department during her time in the in-take area.
The Sheriff's Department also stressed that none of their deputies or employees were involved in this incident in any way, but did give statements about what they witnessed.
Wednesday morning, the following statement was released by the Memphis Police Department:
The Memphis Police Department does not condone any misconduct of a police officer that will compromise official law enforcement duties or the rights or safety of our citizens.
As it relates to the February incident that occurred at the jail facility, the police department has been conducting a thorough internal investigation. The details surrounding the complainant, witnesses and law enforcement officials’ statements are part of an ongoing investigation and can not be released at this time.
As a standard departmental policy, a full, impartial hearing will be held with the accused officer.
Memphis Police can confirm the work status of the two primary officers involved in this complaint. Officer J. Swain was a probationary officer and has been separated from the Memphis Police Department. Officer B. McRae has been placed on non-enforcement status pending an administrative hearing.
Memphis Police can also confirm the Federal Bureau of Investigation had been notified and requested to look into the complaint further.
Detective Monique Y. Martin Memphis Police Department Office of Public Information/Media Relations
Monday, December 9 2013 9:30 PM EST2013-12-10 02:30:09 GMT
Over the weekend in Owensboro, officials with the Salvation Army were thrilled to find a gold coin in one of their red kettles. It was found wrapped up in a note that said it was from: 'Someone who lovesMore >>
Over the weekend in Owensboro, officials with the Salvation Army were thrilled to find a gold coin in one of their red kettles.More >>
Monday, December 9 2013 7:25 PM EST2013-12-10 00:25:38 GMT
(WMC-TV) - One hundred people will be without a job this holiday season as a factory in Olive Branch prepares to close. The plant was scheduled to close, but it will remain open for a few more weeks accordingMore >>
One hundred people will be without a job this holiday season as a factory in Olive Branch prepares to close.More >>
Monday, December 9 2013 5:51 PM EST2013-12-09 22:51:07 GMT
(WMC-TV) - A woman in Tipton County reportedly shot and killed her husband early Sunday morning. Just before 6 a.m., deputies responded to a shooting on Highway 14 South in Brighton. When they arrived,More >>
Angela Brewer originally told deputies she shot and killed her husband after she thought she heard an intruder outside.More >>
Monday, December 9 2013 11:10 PM EST2013-12-10 04:10:09 GMT
The government's recent efforts to cut down on Medicare fraud may be hurting the people who need help the most. People who have severe disabilities have been receiving letters denying payment for the wheelchairsMore >>
The government's recent efforts to cut down on Medicare fraud may be hurting the people who need help the most.
Tuesday, December 10 2013 6:15 PM EST2013-12-10 23:15:07 GMT
(WMC-TV) - Three Memphis women had a frightful weekend on the icy roads. Pamela Byrd Davis, 47, was driving home late Saturday night when she became involved in a multi-car pileup on the Walnut GroveMore >>
Three Memphis women had a frightful weekend on the icy roads. Pamela Byrd Davis, 47, was driving home late Saturday night when she became involved in a multi-car pileup on the Walnut Grove Road-Humphreys Boulevard overpass.More >>
(WMC-TV) – Have you thought this season about opening up your heart and your home to a sweet animal in need of one? This year, we introduce to you "The 12 Strays of Christmas". Action News 5 is partneringMore >>
Have you thought about opening up your heart and your home to a sweet animal in need this holiday season? AN5 is teaming up with the Humane Society of Memphis & Shelby County to bring you "The 12 Strays of Christmas."
Tuesday, December 10 2013 6:44 PM EST2013-12-10 23:44:06 GMT
(WMC-TV) - A Memphis man arrested on child abuse charges claims the 2-year-old victim got hurt when he was dancing with her. Stacey Liddell, 35, is charged with Haley's Law Aggravated Child Abuse andMore >>
A Memphis couple is on trial for punishing a little girl. Officers say they beat her with paddles.More >>
Monday, December 9 2013 7:10 PM EST2013-12-10 00:10:04 GMT
(WMC-TV) - A Mid-South man could face charges after investigators say his story about a home invasion does not all add up. Sheriff's deputies in Tipton County have been investigating a home invasion nowMore >>
A Mid-South man could face charges after investigators say his story about a home invasion does not all add up.More >>
Tuesday, December 10 2013 8:13 AM EST2013-12-10 13:13:18 GMT
(WMC-TV) - It is Kelvin Lake's goal to inspire his family and his entire congregation. That's right, he's the pastor of a church, who says his busy schedule is what helped him become overweight ... that,More >>
It is Kelvin Lake's goal to inspire his family and his entire congregation. That's right, he's the pastor of a church, who says his busy schedule is what helped him become overweight ... that, and the convenience of unhealthy food.More >>
Monday, December 9 2013 8:17 PM EST2013-12-10 01:17:55 GMT
The country music star who set the standard for live concert production in the 1990s is back. Garth Brooks is ready to tour the world again, and he's taking his whole band with him. Brooks remains theMore >>
The country music star who set the standard for live concert production in the 1990s is back. Garth Brooks is ready to tour the world, and he's taking his whole band with him.More >>